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Old 11-15-2007, 06:27 AM   #1
LeonMcS
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Default So...which was the fight? Who was the fighter?

With thanks to Boppa Zoo, this query is inspired from his questionnaire. Apologies if its been done before.

What is the first fight you saw/remember?

Who was the fighter or what was the fight that first made you the diehard boxing fan you are today?


I'm hoping for a good range of diverse answers. I'll lead off.


The first fight I saw/remember was a young tacker, Holmes v Cooney. From memory it was live on the local tele, and remember hoping like crazy Cooney would get up. For what reason I don't remember, but I'm figuring the racial angle had a part to play. A white Hvwt champ would have been a bit of a rare thing so I remember sneaking into the local deli and asking the bigger kids crowded around the pinball machines in front of the tv and sqeuaking 'Hows Cooney doing?'
'Getting whipped'

I watched this fight again just a few weeks ago and also saw HBOs Legendary Fights doco about it (Thanks Mark!). I was appalled to see how heavy the racial angle was played up and really felt bad for Holmes, even though he won. He was a great champ and deserved a lot better than the treatment he received. Fair play to him, he had the balls too to tell it like it was, and was a deserved winner.



The fighter though that got me hooked on the sport though is Jeff Fenech. He competed in the the Olympics in my final year of Primary School and vaguely remember the uproar the decison that got reversed against him. Then he turned pro and just over six months later won the first of his three world titles. As a weedy kid looking for someone my size who kept punching, didn't give up and never took a backward step, he was a god send.

It seemed like all his fights were on tv and even the bigger ones that Sky Channel covered I could always find an older mate to smuggle me into the local pub for my first experiences of that world. In '87 he beat Payakaroon for the second title and remember taping that and watching it over and over. Love him or hate him, and I know a lot of you don't love him here, he gave a massive boost for boxing in this country during this time and for a long time he seemed unbeatable, until the bloody god awful draw in Las Vegas that still pisses me off and I'm convinced, changed his destiny as a fighter.

Jeff was the man for me growing up, stalking his opponents, battling through gammy hands and beating a good class of opposition. Shit, how many of the guys that he beat were former and future world champs?


I guess it all comes down to the era you grew up in, but for me Fenech arrived at just the right time. 23 years later I'm still watching this endlessly beautiful, frustrating and annoying sport. It didn't hurt to have seen Kostya Tszyu from go to woe either, but without Fenech, I doubt I would have caught the bug.


So who was yours?
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Old 11-15-2007, 06:30 AM   #2
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Default Re: So...which was the fight? Who was the fighter?

Quote:
Originally Posted by LeonMcS
With thanks to Boppa Zoo, this query is inspired from his questionnaire. Apologies if its been done before.

What is the first fight you saw/remember?

Who was the fighter or what was the fight that first made you the diehard boxing fan you are today?


I'm hoping for a good range of diverse answers. I'll lead off.


The first fight I saw/remember was a young tacker, Holmes v Cooney. From memory it was live on the local tele, and remember hoping like crazy Cooney would get up. For what reason I don't remember, but I'm figuring the racial angle had a part to play. A white Hvwt champ would have been a bit of a rare thing so I remember sneaking into the local deli and asking the bigger kids crowded around the pinball machines in front of the tv and sqeuaking 'Hows Cooney doing?'
'Getting whipped'

I watched this fight again just a few weeks ago and also saw HBOs Legendary Fights doco about it (Thanks Mark!). I was appalled to see how heavy the racial angle was played up and really felt bad for Holmes, even though he won. He was a great champ and deserved a lot better than the treatment he received. Fair play to him, he had the balls too to tell it like it was, and was a deserved winner.



The fighter though that got me hooked on the sport though is Jeff Fenech. He competed in the the Olympics in my final year of Primary School and vaguely remember the uproar the decison that got reversed against him. Then he turned pro and just over six months later won the first of his three world titles. As a weedy kid looking for someone my size who kept punching, didn't give up and never took a backward step, he was a god send.

It seemed like all his fights were on tv and even the bigger ones that Sky Channel covered I could always find an older mate to smuggle me into the local pub for my first experiences of that world. In '87 he beat Payakaroon for the second title and remember taping that and watching it over and over. Love him or hate him, and I know a lot of you don't love him here, he gave a massive boost for boxing in this country during this time and for a long time he seemed unbeatable, until the bloody god awful draw in Las Vegas that still pisses me off and I'm convinced, changed his destiny as a fighter.

Jeff was the man for me growing up, stalking his opponents, battling through gammy hands and beating a good class of opposition. Shit, how many of the guys that he beat were former and future world champs?


I guess it all comes down to the era you grew up in, but for me Fenech arrived at just the right time. 23 years later I'm still watching this endlessly beautiful, frustrating and annoying sport. It didn't hurt to have seen Kostya Tszyu from go to woe either, but without Fenech, I doubt I would have caught the bug.


So who was yours?
I remember watching many of Jeff Fenech's fights as a kid when i was growing up.
Really enjoyed them, & that was probably what got me started with interests in boxing.
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Old 11-15-2007, 08:14 AM   #3
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Default Re: So...which was the fight? Who was the fighter?

When I was a kid, I remember my dad watching and being interested in boxing. He would always make sure he saw the fights he was interested in. From minor to major (I was too young to remember who exactly). Tyson, Fenech etc were amongst the ones I am old enough to memorise.I was still pretty young though.

When I was a bit older I remembered being fascinated by a KO. I dont know if you guys got this too, but to me as a kid, seeing two blokes give their all and finish someone off by ripping away their ability to fight back was just the definition of defeat and thus the ultimate form of competition. I was pretty enthralled by it and it's that small fact that I owe my passion for boxing to.

As I got older still, I learnt there was more to it than physical dominance. I'd watch the Tyson fights and they'd be exciting and I would feel a kind of adrenaline/nervousness watching fights (still do, especially if i've got my hopes on a fighter in particular). "Who's gonna be the best man tonight?" **** knows!!!! ANYTHING can happen! It's not just about besting each other. It's about TONIGHT. It's about this series of 3 minute rounds; inside which, you could prepare as much as you could, and the tiniest of mistakes can cost you (or in most people's case, their fighter) glory.

Then on 05/02/94 I went and saw a young bloke,aparently making waves in the boxing world called Kostya Tszyu. He wasn't an Aussie and he wasn't a heavy weight... most casual fans couldn't give a **** about that at the time. He took on some guy I'd never heard of and to be honest, I didn't really care for either of them, the card or the night. I just wanted to see a KO in real life.

Anyways, after sitting their with pops and going through the pre-lim fights I found myself getting more and more intrigued by the reality of the sport (I was 11 at the time). There weren't so many KO's, no commentary hyping the action like on TV and the atmosphere was a typical pub night out at Newy entertainment centre - much akin to a night at the yearly Show.

Then came the main event....

Out walked a Peurto Rican I'd never heard of along with a Russian I'd never heard of (can't remember which order unfortunately!).

The card girls did their thing (I prolly cracked a little boner at them too! :P) and then the bell rang. All of a sudden every ****er in the place started screaming. I felt the excitement and ran with it. Between round 1 and 2 I asked my dad why everyone was so excited this time (as compared to the other fights) and he explained to me the Russian/Australian thing with KT and that he lived here now and trainging/fighting in Oz. He's a local hero, amateur champ and one of the sharpest fighters he's seen. "He'll go a long way this bloke" he said.

What followed was 6 rounds of the destruction of Angel Hernandez at the hands of Kostya Tszyu. Through those 6 rounds I no longer cared about the KO. I was mesmerised. Here was this young guy (who for all i Knew was now a Newy boy, which in most cases didn't amount to much at all :P ) tactically wearing down and destroying an international fighter from overseas! I could have watched it for 100 rounds and not given a **** if there was a KO or not. KT was taking this guy apart. He moved with thought and precision, saw punches coming - answered back with logical punches ("moves" I called it at the time - based on my Street Fighter II wars at Timezone etc) and essentially beat this guy until he had nothing left.

Then, in round 7, he stopped him. The crowd went nuts and this humble little Russian guy did a small celebration, thanked everyone for coming and their support and hugged the guy he just destroyed in front of us all. I was sold.

A few years later KT ended up doing his training at the gym my parents worked at and trained in my school yard - with all us kids mimicking everything he did... always maintaining his focus, but still giving time to the kids who admired him...

anyways... so I was a fan of boxing, from a voyeuristic point of view, seeing KO's and hard fought fights etc for a long time. But it was that night that made me a passionate and devoted fan to the sport as a whole. From then I watched as much boxing as I could and it still remains the most pure and ultimate sport imo that there is. It might come across as corny, the above, but essentially that's how I saw it at that young age. Obviously Ive woken up and can see that there is more to the sport, the fighters etc, but essentially that's how I became a fan and there are still uncontrolable butterflies in my stomach everytime I watch a match up where there is even just a little bit of pride, a title or something serious at stake when the fighters step in the ring!
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Old 11-15-2007, 08:35 AM   #4
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Default Re: So...which was the fight? Who was the fighter?

Im a young'un, so i rememeber clearly the fight between Henry Maske and Virgil Hill. Uneventful fight but wet my taste buds 4 sure....
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Old 11-15-2007, 09:41 AM   #5
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Default Re: So...which was the fight? Who was the fighter?

Quote:
Im a young'un, so i rememeber clearly the fight between Henry Maske and Virgil Hill. Uneventful fight but wet my taste buds 4 sure....
**** me that's random! Nice!
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Old 11-15-2007, 09:40 PM   #6
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Default Re: So...which was the fight? Who was the fighter?

The first ever Fight i watched as a boxing fan was

Mike Tyson vs Larry Homles

But as for me becoming the boxing fan iam today the fight that sticks out in my mind was just before Fenech rematched Nelson in Melbourne i got the chance because my auncle to sit down and actually have tea with Jeff Fenech at my local Pub in country Victoria.

So it was that fight and just before that fight that got me interested in boxing.

Its just a shame he lost.
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Old 11-15-2007, 09:48 PM   #7
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Default Re: So...which was the fight? Who was the fighter?

the first fight i remember watching was fenech-v-nelson1.

but the fight that got me hooked was briggs -v-kelly
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Old 11-15-2007, 09:51 PM   #8
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Default Re: So...which was the fight? Who was the fighter?

My first memory of boxing was a yellow and black poster or mag of Hagler. Long time ago!!!
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Old 11-15-2007, 10:09 PM   #9
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Default Re: So...which was the fight? Who was the fighter?

First fight I actively watched was Muhammed Ali vs Larry Holmes in 1980 (I was 9) - my dad was a huge Ali fan and had brought me up on him, always used to talk about him, etc, but I never actually got to see a fight of his until the Holmes one.

I can remember watching it live on free to air TV believe it or not!

I remember the hype about the fight was that Holmes was a sparring partner of Ali's, and was this going to be a case of the old hero passing the torch onto the new young lion, or would the old hero be able to win one more fight?

I was ever-optimistic during the fight, I refused to acknowledge that Ali was being hammered by Holmes, I remember cheering Ali on and saying "He's gonna win!" and my Dad trying his best to break it to me gently, shaking his head and saying softly "Naw son, I think he's had enough".

It wasn't until many years later I actually appreciated that my Dad was also pretty broken up by it, as he was such a huge fan.
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